2024 Washington International Trade Conference Recap




On Monday, February 12th, 2024, and Tuesday, February 13th, 2024, WITA hosted its sixth annual Washington International Trade Conference (WITC). This conference brought together leaders in international trade from across the U.S. and around the world to explore the trade landscape and look toward the future of trade. 

The event began with welcoming remarks from Kenneth I. Levinson, Executive Director of WITA, as well as an introduction to the first two panelists: Angela Ellard, Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organization, and Moderator Ambassador Peter Allgeier, President, Nauset Global LLC; former Deputy U.S. Trade Representative. 

The second panel, “Balancing at the Border – Trade Policies to Close the Pollution Loophole”, included panelists Linda Dempsey, Vice President, Public Affairs, CF Industries, Matthew Bolden, Climate Policy Advisor, Senate Budget Committee for Chairman Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Christine Harbin, Energy Policy Advisor, Senator Bill Cassidy M.D. (R-LA), Catrina Rorke, Executive Director, Center for Climate and Trade; Senior Vice President for Policy and Research, Climate Leadership Council, and Moderator Maureen Hinman, Cofounder & Chairman, Silverado Policy Accelerator; former Director, Environment and Natural Resources, Office of the United States Trade Representative. 

The third panel, “Taking stock – U.S. – China Trade Relations”, featured speakers Jeremie Waterman, President, China Center, Vice President, Greater China, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Anna Ashton, Director, China Corporate Affairs & US-China, Eurasia Group, Jamieson Greer, Partner, King & Spalding, Paul Triolo, Associate Partner for China and Technology Policy Lead at Albright Stonebridge Group | Dentons Global Advisors, and moderator Timothy Keeler, Partner & Co-Leader of International Trade, Mayer Brown. 

The fourth panel, “Geopolitical Impacts on Supply Chains”, included speakers Stefanie H. Ali, Senior Director, Rice, Hadley, Gates & Manuel LLC, Marc Gilbert, Managing Director and Senior Partner, Boston Consulting Group, Michelle La Plante, Director, Risk Management and Resiliency, Enterprise Risk & Security Management, TE Connectivity, Cheryl Steele, Vice President of Global Security & Resilience / Chief Security Officer, Starbucks Coffee Company, and Moderator Penny Naas, TradeExperettes. 

The fifth panel highlighted “U.S. Global Strategic and Trade Priorities”, and included panelists Heather A. Conley, President, German Marshall Fund of the United States, Eric Farnsworth, Head of the Washington Office of the Council of the Americas and the Americas Society, Florizelle Liser, President & CEO, Corporate Council on Africa, Ambassador Kurt W. Tong, Managing Partner, The Asia Group, LLC, and Moderator Ari Giovenco, Head, U.S. Trade Policy, Amazon. 

Day two of the Conference began with a panel on “20 Trends for 2024”, headlined by Robert Moran, Partner, Brunswick Group and moderated by Kenneth I. Levinson, Chief Executive Officer, Washington International Trade Association. 

The second panel featured an armchair discussion with Jay Timmons, President & CEO, National Association of Manufacturers and was moderated by Doug Palmer, Senior Trade Reporter, POLITICO. 

The third panel featured an “Ambassadors Rountable: Trade as a Foreign Policy Pillar”, including Ambassador Esteban Moctezuma Barragán, Ambassador of Mexico to the United States, Ambassador Lui Tuck Yew, Ambassador of the Republic of Singapore to the United States, Ambassador Catalina Crespo-Sancho, Ambassador of Costa Rica to the United States, Ambassador Jovita Neliupšienė, Appointed Ambassador of the European Union to the United States, and Moderator Moderator: Ambassador Kristen Silverberg, President & COO, Business Roundtable. 

The closing session of the 2023 Washington International Trade Conference was a luncheon keynote with Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE), Chairman of the Trade Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee, United States House of Representatives and Moderator Stephanie Lester, Vice President, Head of Government Affairs, Gap Inc.. 


WITC 2024 Program